thenews.com.pk 21 Sep, 2020 04:30 am

In less than 8 years, Islamabad has been under siege for 170 days

In less than 8 years, Islamabad has been under siege for 170 days
LAHORE: As Islamabad braces up for yet another long march in January 2021, announced this time around by an All Parties Conference spearheaded by country’s major ruling political parties of...

National September 21, 2020 LAHORE: As Islamabad braces up for yet another long march in January 2021, announced this time around by an All Parties Conference (APC) spearheaded by country’s major ruling political parties of yesteryear, the former premier Nawaz Sharif-led PML-N and ex-president Asif Zardari’s PPP against the incumbent regime, history shows that the Pakistani capital has stood the test of time on many such occasions in the past.In fact, as research conducted by the “Jang Group and Geo Television Network” shows, that the restive Islamabad has literally remained under siege for 170 days during the major sit-ins staged on its soil since January 14, 2013 or little less than eight years, when the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) Chief Dr Tahirul Qadri had also chosen the cold, chilly and wet January for his eventful 2013 long march against the then-ruling Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) government.On January 14, 2013, Dr Tahirul Qadri had started this long march from his Model Town Lahore residence to Islamabad’s Parliament D-Chowk via the Grand Trunk Road.PAT’s January 14 to 17, 2013 long march from Lahore to Islamabad had culminated after the then PPP government had agreed to hold parleys with Qadri, who was demanding electoral reforms and dissolution of the National Assembly, all four provincial assemblies; and the disbanding of the country's Election Commission.

Schools in the capital and many businesses on the long march route had remained closed for four days during January 2013 and more than 10,000 police and paramilitary troops had to be deployed throughout Islamabad.Qadri’s long march had ended after the then sitting prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, also found guilty of corruption in rental power projects while he was serving a the Minister for Water and Power, had signed a declaration with the PAT chief.

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